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Activist investor Carl Icahn bets big on eBay

Billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn has added another $25 million (£16.2 million) into eBay in the fourth quarter, adding 1 per cent to his 46 million shares in the company.

Icahn has been pushing for a board seat on eBay to influence new decisions inside the auction company, including the PayPal split that Icahn spearheaded in mid-2014.

The total investment in eBay racks up to $2.6 billion (£1.68 billion), making Icahn the largest single investor. It is not clear why Icahn continues to invest in eBay, considering he sees PayPal as the more profitable venture.

Icahn is not alone in that regard, even ex-CEO of PayPal Elon Musk agreed it was odd for eBay to own the payments service, claiming it was holding it back.

Many investors claim PayPal could reach $100 billion (£64 billion) in valuation without the shackles of eBay holding them back, but others see the lack of mobile integration as a potential slump.

eBay is currently working on fixing its own issues, after CEO John Donahoe announced 7 per cent of the workforce would be removed and the enterprise division would be dropped.

It is part of eBay's plan to bring the auction site back to profitability, following several failures against Amazon and other e-commerce stores.

eBay also failed to win over China against Alibaba, who now controls most online sales in the region.

David has been a technology journalist for over six years, covering a wide range of sectors. He currently researches apps, app sectors and app markets for Business of Apps, and has written for ITProPortal, RTInsights, ReadWrite, and Digital Trends.